Hawks: Home games ahead Print
Written by MITCH MAERSCH   
Wednesday, 03 January 2018 20:13

Hannah Belanger had oodles of fun at Wisconsin Dells last week, and that was before she even got to a water park.
Grafton’s star junior guard scored a career-high 39 points against Evansville on shooting so hot she could warm the frigid outdoor temperatures.
The offensive outburst helped the Black Hawks to a dominating 73-44 non-conference victory on Dec. 28.
Evansville tried a box-and-one zone on Belanger, but coach Mike Grzesiak said the defender often got bumped off on screens.
“I just don’t think Evansville plays a lot of man. They play a lot of zone,” he said.
Belanger shot 12-for-13 from the field, 3-for-4 on three-pointers and went 6-for-6 from the free-throw line.
Much of Belanger’s scoring came on ball fakes and drives to the basket after catching the ball on the elbow, Grzesiak said.
Grafton girls hoops Hannah shooting 12 21 17Belanger could have had more points, but Grzesiak took her out with eight minutes left to play. Her 39 points came in 28 minutes.
It wasn’t just Belanger’s offense that stood out.
“In addition to that, she held their leading scorer, who had averaged 22 points a game, to 12. So Hannah held her to half of her average,” Grzesiak said.
Belanger’s previous high was 31 against Port Washington on Jan. 6. She scored 30 at Port on Feb. 10.
Belanger reached the career 1,000-point milestone on Dec. 15 against Nicolet.
Grafton took a 40-23 lead into halftime and never looked back.
Sophomore point guard Hailey Block scored nine points on 4-for-5 shooting.
“Hailey block played great, penetrated when she had the opportunity to,” Grzesiak said.
Grzesiak also praised the play of Ava Pederson for setting screens and “doing the dirty work.
“Ava did a lot of stuff you don’t see in the box score,” he said.
Besides the game, the Hawks got to bond during a team dinner, at a water park and while watching movies traveling to and from the Dells.
“It was great. The girls got to hang out,” Grzesiak said.
Now 8-2 overall and 6-2 in the North Shore Conference, Grafton plays at Hartford (3-4 NSC) on Friday and hosts Port Washington (0-7) on Jan. 12.
After playing nine of their first 11 games on the road, Grzesiak said he is looking forward to eight of the next 11 at home.